Exactly 6 years ago today I left Orange County, California for the Black Forest in Germany. Arguably one of the most important days in my life, I have now lived in Europe for 17% of my life. That shocked me when I thought about it this morning (as I was dead-ass tired at 7am by the way) as I was standing in 20-degree weather waiting for the tram to take me into town. 6 years ago I made the biggest change in my life, something that sums up a lot of my life since April 1999 when I started living my life to the fullest. I wanted to get the most out of my meager existence and what is the best way to do that? For me the answer was travel. Since January 13, 2003, I have travelled as much as almost all Americans have, I would guess. Could I have been more professional, worked harder, made more money and had a better television and a car and blah blah blah? Yes. But to have traded all those things for the opportunity to have experienced things like 2 months in South America, 6 weeks in Central America, 6 weeks in (normal) America and numerous 2 and 3-week trips the Baltic States, Norway, Spain, Turkey and many other experiences in Italy, Montenegro, Romania, Portugal and other places around Europe. Those things have easily been worth what I have given up. It’s like the Europeans and Indians meeting for the first time, and the Europeans trading beads and mirrors and scissors for gold. I got gold as far as I’m concerned.
So, how will I celebrate the day? I worked my one class from 8-9:30am, picked up some digital photos, a new knife and spatula and then went back to home. I plan on doing some exercising, some writing, my lesson plans for the rest of the week and early into bed. Perhaps I’ll go out tomorrow evening as that is the anniversary that I arrived in Germany to live here.